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Chapter 71 – Thoracic Vertebral Compression Fracture

ICD-9 CODES 805.2 Traumatic 733.13 Pathologic

ICD-10 CODESS 22.009A Traumatic M84.48xA Pathologic

The Clinical Syndrome

Thoracic vertebral compression fracture is one of the most common causes of dorsal spine pain. Vertebral compression fractures are most often the result of osteoporosis (Fig. 71-1), but they may also occur with trauma to the dorsal spine caused by acceleration-deceleration injuries. In osteoporotic patients or in those with primary tumors or metastatic disease involving the thoracic vertebrae, fracture may occur with coughing (tussive fractures) or spontaneously.

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The pain and functional disability associated with fractured vertebrae are determined largely by the severity of the injury (e.g., number of vertebrae involved) and the nature of the injury (e.g., whether the fracture causes impingement on the spinal nerves or spinal cord). The pain associated with thoracic vertebral compression fracture may range from a dull, deep …